I don’t know about you, but when I want something, I want it…NOW! I am not alone in feeling this way. The technology world is a very “I need this now” type of place. Sometimes, “now” isn’t always better – sometimes “now” can spell issues for a lot of people. With how readily available everything is, it is very easy to install software that hasn’t officially been released yet. A lot of you already run this type of software on a daily basis. I am talking about Beta Software and I want to know how many of you live on the edge.
I was sitting down at the computer, sitting on my specialized cushion, as I have a lot of issues down in that region (don’t ask…because I’ll tell you). I was sitting and thinking about Developer Previews. Now I suppose, technically, a developer preview isn’t considered a beta build-but lets be real, it is. Many operating systems have a program that let’s a developer install unreleased software to their device. This can benefit them in a few ways.
When a software developer for a specific OS installs a preview of what is to come, it lets that developer prepare and begin work on updating their app or software to support this system update. Now the problem (in my eyes) with developer previews, is that they are often readily available to more users than just developers. Not every user fully understands what a developer preview is. So when they run applications on this preview, they often get upset that things are not going according to plan. This often isn’t fair for the developer as they will get bad reviews. Developers then have to put in the extra effort to explain to users that it has nothing to do with the product they provide.
Three developer previews come to mind: Windows Phone Developer Preview, Android L Developer Preview, and iOS 8 Beta. All three can be installed and used on your devices, and you don’t even have to be a developer. Yes that’s right, any Tom, Dick, or Harry can run this software and it hasn’t even been officially released yet. While the software can be run and used day to day, it is a preview for a reason. It is beta software whether you like it or not. If you are someone that fully relies on their device for work or other matter, then most likely you are not one of the people that run these builds.
Some of you run these every day without an issue. However that doesn’t necessarily mean that these are stable and ready to be distributed to the masses. That just means that for what you run on your device, it just works. Every device is different and while you may not run very many applications, someone else might. For me personally Windows Phone 8.1 developer preview has been a tease. Everything works for the most part, but you definitely feel like some stability is missing. Windows Phone 8.1 is by far a better OS than WP 8, but not everything is optimized with it yet.
Some of you don’t mess with Beta operating systems. Some of you just like to run Beta applications. These applications you can find anywhere, and most developers will release these builds for testing purposes. Even some giant companies like Facebook and Twitter have beta builds. You will find that these will work every day for the most part. What you have to keep in mind, is that these applications get updated more frequently than their “Stable” counterparts. So the likelihood of running into a feature that is broken is high. That doesn’t turn everyone away though, some of you are like Patrick Swayze in Point Break…so edgy, carefree, and handsome.
So tell us in our poll if you are someone that needs to run stable software or if you play guitar in the band U2 because you live life on the edge. I have a feeling that most of our readers probably run beta software of some kind, but I could be surprised. Don’t forget to comment with your favorite applications that have a beta build.
Google Play Store: Official TechDissected App ( NOT Beta Software ♥ )